BALTIMORE — Senior Casey Townsend tallied three goals and John Stertzer headed home the winner in overtime to lead No. 1 Maryland past UMBC 4-3 in front of a Retriever Soccer Park record crowd Tuesday.
Stertzer, after missing a possible game-winning penalty kick with 30 seconds left in the first overtime period, snagged a perfect cross from Taylor Kemp and headed home the winner from five yards out in the 104th minute. Townsend tallied his second-career hat trick to lead the Terps (6-0-0). UMBC fell to 2-1-2 with the loss.
After a scoreless first half, Townsend jump started the offense in the 46th minute after Sunny Jane crossed a ball over to the senior Hermann Trophy candidate. The forward completed the play with a solid strike to the keeper’s left for a Maryland lead.
UMBC got on the scoreboard six minutes later but Townsend put the Terps up by two with a pair of goals in the 57th and 81st minute.
The Retrievers were able to salvage a tie by regulation’s end with a pair of Sean Rothe scores in the 83rd and 84th minute. Rothe’s first score was a brilliant strike from 27 yards out and the second came with lots of traffic in the box and in front of Maryland keeper Will Swaim.
Stertzer’s penalty kick in the first overtime came less than a minute remaining in the stanza after Patrick Mullins was taken down in the box. After missing the free chance, Stertzer’s header in the second extra period gave the junior his fourth goal of the year and Maryland its best start since 2003.
“I think it was a very exciting college soccer game,” head coach Sasho Cirovski said. “I wanted to bring our team into a hornet’s nest…to have the largest crowd in their program’s history and a very good team pushing us. The second half, we came out and played Maryland soccer but we didn’t manage the last 10 minutes well.
“I give our guys credit. We came back. We calmed down. We showed great resilience and great grit. The reason I have John Stertzer take penalties is because he has the courage and strength to come back from that. And he certainly came back with a great goal.”